yan nah svadhitam guravah prasadita
vipras ca vrddhas ca sad-anuvrttya
arya natah suhrdo bhrataras ca
sarvani bhutany anasuyayaiva
yan nah sutaptam tapa etad isa
nirandhasam kalam adabhram apsu
sarvam tad etat purusasya bhumno
vrnimahe te paritosanaya
Translation by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada:
Dear Lord, we have studied the Vedas, accepted a spiritual master and offered respect to brahmanas, advanced devotees and aged personalities who are spiritually very advanced. We have offered our respects to them, and we have not been envious of any brother, friends or anyone else. We have also undergone severe austerities within the water and have not taken food for a long time. All these spiritual assets of ours are simply offered for Your satisfaction. We pray for this benediction only, and nothing more.
Purport by His Divine Grace A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Srila Prabhupada:
As stated in Srimad-Bhagavatam, samsiddhir hari-tosanam: the real perfection of life is pleasing the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Vedais ca sarvair aham eva vedyah: in understanding the Vedas, one has to understand the Supreme Personality of Godhead. One who has actually understood Him surrenders unto Him after many, many births. We find all these qualifications in the Pracetas. They underwent severe austerities and penances within the water, and they did not take any food for a very long time. They practiced these austerities not for material benediction but for the satisfaction of the Supreme Lord. One may engage in any business — material or spiritual — but the purpose should be the satisfaction of the Supreme Personality of Godhead. This verse presents a perfect picture of Vedic civilization. People training to become devotees should be respectful not only to the Supreme Personality of Godhead but also to those who are elderly in knowledge, who are Aryans and actual devotees of the Lord. An Aryan is one who does not boast but is an actual devotee of the Lord. Aryan means “advanced.” Formerly, those who claimed to be Aryans had to be devotees of the Lord. For instance, in Bhagavad-gita (2.2) Krsna chastised Arjuna by saying that he was speaking like a non-Aryan:
kutas tva kasmalam idam
“The Supreme Person [Bhagavan] said: My dear Arjuna, how have these impurities come upon you? They are not at all befitting a man who knows the progressive values of life. They do not lead to higher planets, but to infamy.” Arjuna, the ksatriya, was refusing to fight despite being directly ordered by the Supreme Lord. He was thus chastised by the Lord as belonging to a non-Aryan family. Anyone who is advanced in the devotional service of the Lord certainly knows his duty. It does not matter whether his duty is violent or nonviolent. If it is sanctioned and ordered by the Supreme Lord, it must be performed. An Aryan performs his duty. It is not that the Aryans are unnecessarily inimical to living entities. The Aryans never maintain slaughterhouses, and they are never enemies of poor animals. The Pracetas underwent severe austerities for many, many years, even within the water. Accepting austerities and penances is the avowed business of those interested in advanced civilization.
The word nirandhasam means “without food.” Eating voraciously and unnecessarily is not the business of an Aryan. Rather, the eating process should be restricted as far as possible. When Aryans eat, they eat only prescribed eatables. Regarding this, the Lord says in Bhagavad-gita (9.26):
patram puspam phalam toyam
yo me bhaktya prayacchati
tad aham bhakty-upahrtam
“If one offers Me with love and devotion a leaf, a flower, fruit or water, I will accept it.” Thus there are restrictions for the advanced Aryans. Although the Lord Himself can eat anything and everything, He restricts Himself to vegetables, fruits, milk and so on. This verse thus describes the activities of those who claim to be Aryans.